It lasted three days, included more than 25 sessions, and had over 80 customers and employees, but the benefits it will bring in the way we collaborate with our customers will be immeasurable. In June, we launched our Syniverse Users’ Group with an inaugural meeting in Tampa that brought together customers from around the world for an intensive schedule of technology seminars, panel discussions, product working groups, and networking sessions.
The meeting was kicked off by Luke Sessions, Chairperson of our Users’ Group executive committee, and Senior Manager of Software Development at T-Mobile, who then introduced Syniverse CEO and President Dean Douglas, Chief Marketing Officer Bill Hurley, and Chief Technology Officer Chris Rivera, who were just a few of our senior leaders who participated.
We had an action-packed agenda that focused on such hot topics as 5G, blockchain, Rich Communication Services (RCS), and the internet of things (IoT). We also held a number of product working groups to gather customers’ feedback on their desired product updates, product modifications, and new products to address today’s emerging industry developments and trends.
Executive Support Makes the Difference
Our first meeting was a success on two levels. First, the feedback has been overwhelmingly positive. We had a similar group several years ago, and although it was discontinued, it gained such a great reputation that we regularly received requests by our customers and our own account and product teams to bring it back. Now they have it. A second reason for the meeting’s success was the full support we received from Syniverse’s executive leaders as well as the support from the Users’ Group executive committee that we established. This latter group consists of customers whose primary role is to assist us in planning and managing the Users’ Group meetings, and to act as a formal communication channel between Syniverse and all Users’ Group members.
On this front, we’re extremely indebted to our first Users’ Group executive committee members: Luke Sessions, Senior Manager, Software Development, T-Mobile (Chairperson); Angie Flom, Vice President, Billing and Roaming Operations, Commnet ATN International; Brian Biernat, Director, Vendor Relations and Core Network Standards, C Spire; Terry Rolston, Senior Manager, Network Roaming, Bell Mobility; and Mihaela Ambrozie, Principal Service Manager, Operations, Vodafone Roaming Services.
Following the success of the meeting, we’re exploring two next steps for the Users’ Group. One, we’re investigating holding one more meeting this year somewhere outside the Americas. We hope to reach a decision on that and announce details shortly. Important to keep in mind with this is that the first phase of our Users’ Group program that began this year includes our communications provider customers, and a second phase planned for next year will expand the program to include our enterprise customers.
Another step we’re taking is the planning of a series of virtual educational sessions to continue sharing and discussing our insights from some of the meeting’s most popular seminars and workshops. We’re currently exploring the topics of 5G, RCS, roaming, and security and identity.
There’s a lot going on with our Users’ Group following our kickoff meeting, and we’re looking forward to a busy year ahead. In wrapping up, I’d like to close with some final reminders.
- First, we’ll be holding elections for our next group of executive committee members later in the year. As a reminder, each executive committee serves a one-year term and is supported by a Syniverse “sponsor.” At the end of each executive committee group’s term, a nomination process and election will be held among the full Users’ Group membership to seat a new committee. We’ll communicate more on this soon through our Users’ Group emails, which will include information on how Users’ Group members can be considered for the committee.
- Second, if you’re a member and haven’t already done so, please be sure to add the Users’ Group mobile wallet pass to your mobile device so you can have the latest news and important activities dynamically delivered to your device in real time. If you need this mobile wallet pass sent to you or if you have any other questions or suggestions about the Users’ Group, the central point of contact to reach us at any time is firstname.lastname@example.org.
Katrina Cashman is Senior Director of Product Marketing at Syniverse and works at the company’s headquarters, in Tampa, Florida.